Mundie Moms

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Book Review: Sweet Evil by Wendy Higgins

Published by: Harper Teen
Released on: May 1st, 2012 TODAY
Source: ARC from publisher to review
4 stars: I Enjoyed It
Purchase from: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

What if there were teens whose lives depended on being bad influences? This is life for sons and daughters of fallen angels in Sweet Evil.

Tenderhearted Southern girl, Anna Whitt, was born with the sixth sense to see and feel emotions of other people. She’s aware of a struggle within herself, an inexplicable pull toward danger, but it isn’t until she turns sixteen and meets the alluring Kaidan Rowe that she discovers her terrifying heritage, and her will-power is put to the test. He’s the boy your daddy warned you about. If only someone had warned Anna.

A cross-country trip to meet her father forces Anna to face the reality that hope and love are not options for her kind. When she confronts her destiny, will Anna embrace her halo or her horns?
-quoted from Goodreads

Seductive, Sweet, and Intense, Sweet Evil is a book paranormal romance fans will devour. There's something about a forbidden romance, hot character chemistry and a fascinating paranormal world that makes for a read that's hard to put down, and Sweet Evil is one of those indulgence I couldn't stop reading. I was not excepting to find myself as wrapped as I was with this book. Wendy's world building, character development and engaging plot line made for an exciting read. 

Before I talk characters, I want to mention the world building. I was captivated with Wendy's ability to create a world that was both fascinating and intense in the sense I couldn't stop reading it. I wanted to know more about the world, the characters and their history. Don't write this book off for another YA book about angels and demons. There's much more than that happening in Sweet Evil. Yes, Sweet Evil has angel lore in it, but the main focus of the story is the characters who are the off spring of Demons, the fallen angels who followed Lucifer out of heaven and were banished to hell. Twelve of the strongest were made Dukes and reside on earth, and one is a Lord over one of the 12 indulgences humans fall victim too, lust, addictions, greed etc. Many of them have at least one offspring, hence the story of Anna.

I thought Anna was a great protagonist. She starts off as this sweet and completely innocent girl, but as the story goes on finds out far more than she ever thought possible about herself. She's the daughter of a Guardian Angel and a Demon. Her father is the Duke of Addiction. Here's the think I like about Anna, was getting to see and understand her inner battle over the good vs evil that she constantly faces on a daily bases. Being half and half makes her a powerful girl, but it also makes her naive to the things going on around her. I liked how much her grew as the story goes on, even though she does do a few surprising things. She not only meets her father for the first at sixteen and gets thrown right into this darker world, but she also falls in love for the first time. She meets Kaidan at a time when she's trying to figure out more about who she really is and what these abilities are that she has. 

Kaidan, who just so happens to be the son of the Duke of Lust knows how to bring it in this story. This boy come loaded with charm, experience and hotness. One of the things I liked about Kaidan is how straight forward he is with Anna and really everyone. There's no sugar coating anything with this boy. The chemistry between Anna and Kaidan is smoking! I seriously loved how the two of them were intrigued with each other, couldn't stand each other, then were intrigued with each other again. Through out much of the book they fought the feelings they had for each other. They definitely had some steamy moments between the two of them, when they gave into their impulses. Being that heir love was strictly forbidden, and could result in death definitely upped the stakes in this book.

Aside from Anna and Kaidan is a cast of colorful characters who all added a richness to the story. They all had a purpose being in this book and I liked getting to know some of them more. Anna's Dad is someone who intrigued me the most. I loved that his bad a guy who ruled part of the dark underworld had this soft spot not only for Anna's mom before she did, but Anna as well. I mean he's not someone you want to mess with, but the tenderness he shows got to the softer side of me. I loved getting to know more about his story with Anna's mom. That's the thing that Wendy does with this book that hooked me. She creates such realistic characters, has these rich descriptions that just suck you in and allow you to feel and connect with the story, and she leaves wanting more. Not just from the main characters, but from all the characters.

The funny thing about this book is I was more drawn to the cover of it than the synopsis. I honestly thought there would be all this stuff going on in the book like a bunch of teenage partying, sex etc and I personally didn't want to read it. *gasp* I totally judged a book before reading it, and I'm so pleasantly surprised it proved me wrong! Yes there's sensual scenes, underage drinking, mentions of fooling around, rape and drugs, but there's no profanity, no sex or hard core stuff in this book. In fact, Anna is a virgin and her virginity plays a huge role in this book, and I liked that. This book is more about choosing your destiny, redemption and rising above what's expected of you vs what you know is right. From the moment I opened the book I couldn't put it down. The way in which Wendy unravels her plot line and allowed me to get to know her characters more and understand her world building was addicting and so refreshing for me. I'm hoping there's going to be a sequel to this book!

City of Lost Souls Snippet #3; 6 Days Till COLS

Dim light spilled through the windows, and a faint red glow from the smoke alarm over the closet. Clary was lying on her side, under a heap of blankets, and her back was deliciously warm. An arm was draped along her side. For a moment, in the half-conscious dizzy space between waking and sleeping, she wondered if Simon had crawled in the window while she slept, and laid down beside her, the way they used to sleep in the same bed together when they were children.
But Simon had no body heat…

City of Lost Souls Snippet #2, 7 Days Till COLS

Sebastian looked at Jocelyn, his black eyes quiet and narrow. “If you were really a real mother,” he said, “a good mother, you would have known I was alive. There was a man once who said that mothers carry the key of our souls with them all our lives. But you threw mine away.”

12 Days of Morganville Madness: Day 12: Black Dawn

I'm thrilled to be the 12th and final stop in the 12 Days of Morganville Madness tour. Today I have an interview with the lovely Rachel Caine. 


What kicked off the concept for this book?
 It’s the second half of the story continued in LAST BREATH – our last ditch struggle for survival against the draug!

Which character do I think stood out in this book, and why?
 I think maybe it was Oliver. He got a lot of point of view time in this story, and you begin to realize that his motives for hanging around Morganville might not just be all about his ambition …

Five things I loved about writing this book:
A. The draug hide in the weirdest places. I mean, the water treatment plant?
B. I got to have Shane come up with a new weapon that no one had ever considered before. And it actually fit with his character, completely.
C. I’d always meant to have Naomi have hidden agendas, and they got to emerge in this book.
D. Oliver’s defense of Amelie even when all hope is gone
E. Myrnin.

Five things I didn't love about writing this book
A. Shane’s dream sequence was really, really hard to write – it had to seem real in the beginning, then gradually become less real and more disconnected so he (and the reader) would recognize the wrongness of it. That proved to be difficult enough to have three drafts.
B. Somebody else dies in this book that I’d rather have kept around, but I needed it to happen. And it made me sad, a little.
C. I wanted to write the last chapter a whole lot longer and more elaborately, but I realized that if I did, it undermined the uneasy note of the end of the book. So. Short it is.
D. Thinking about all the ways the draug might be able to get at my characters. Water is everywhere. It made me a little paranoid.
E. Ending this storyline. I really liked having the draug around. In a terribly twisted way.

If I could do this book over, what would I do differently, and why?
I wish I could have had more of the [last chapter event] on the page.

Favorite quoted passage from the book

Theo nodded, frowning a little. "You're going to fight the draug, I gather."

"It is what she wanted. And in truth, what I want as well." Oliver's eyes gleamed a little with red sparks. "Not many good fights left in this sad, pallid world, with its frail, sensitive people. The draug at least do not mewl and whine about a few bruises."

"You've always been insane," Theo said. "Insane for your beliefs, insane for power, insane for blood. I suppose that may be what we require now. More insanity."

What I learned from this book
What happens when you take away all of the vampires’ natural predators and leave everything finally, decisively in their favor? Nothing good.

Fun research moment
I got to do a lot of chemical research into binding agents, how to make certain chemicals from scratch, and what NASA uses to clean up massive spills. Also: how many times do you get to research how a flamethrower works?

Thank you to Penguin for providing the interview questions. 

Thank you to Rachel Caine for stopping by Mundie Moms today. Please be sure to visit Rachel via her Website | Live Journal | Twitter  | Facebook 

The hotly-anticipated twelfth instalment in the Morganville Vampires series

In Last Breath, the rain brought a new and dire threat to Morganville and its vampires... their ancient enemies, the draug. Now, the vampires are fighting a losing war, and it will fall to the residents of the Glass House: Michael, Eve, Shane and Claire, to take the fight to an enemy who threatens to destroy the town, forever.

Lovers of Morganville, rejoice: Black Dawn takes the intrigue, romance and nail-biting suspense of the series to its highest level yet! -
quoted from Goodreads

You can pick up your copy of BLACK DAWN TODAY at the following book stores or order it online Amazon | Barnes & Noble 


You can follow the entire 12 Days of Morganville Madness tour by visiting the following blogs:

Glass Houses @ Page Turners
The Dead Girls Dance @ Melanie McCullough
Midnight Alley @ Book-Splout
Feast of Fools @Hobbitsies
Lord of Misrule @ Book Monster Reviews
Kiss of Death @ The Story Siren
Bite Club @ Total Bookaholic
Last Breath @ Literal Addiction
Black Dawn @ Mundie Moms

Thank you to Penguin, I have a SIGNED copy of Black Dawn along with a Black Dawn bookmark to giveaway!! To enter, please fill out the form below:
- US residents only
- You must be 13 yrs & older to enter
- 1 entry per person
- This giveaway ends on May 8th, 2012

City of Fallen Angels Read A Long Day 14: What Dreams May Come

Welcome to Day 14 of the City of Fallen Angels Read-A-Long. You can follow the entire read-a-long and find each of the day's posts here. Remember there's no right or wrong way to participate. Your comments can be as long or a short as you'd like them to be. You can answer one or each of the questions asked, it's totally up to you, BUT, in order to be entered into the COLS giveaway (which you also had to sign up to win), you do need to be actively participating in the read-a-long. 

Today's discussion is about: Chapter 14: What Dreams May Come
  • Jace's dream of Max starts out a little heart breaking knowing how much his death still bothers Jace. I can't believe someone used Max to get to Jace. I don't know why, but I should have caught on the first time I read this who would be so cruel/evil to do that. Did you pick up on who bonded themselves to Jace when you first read COFA?
  • I feel so bad for Simon over finding out about Maureen's death. Do you think she's really dead and who do you think would want Maureen? Do you think that someone besides Jordan saw Simon bite her? 
  • With this read through I picked up on what Kaelie had pointed out about the Herondale and the Morgenstern rings, when she asked Clary why she wore the Morgenstern ring. It's interesting that she pointed out that the Herondale ring better suits Jace as it has patterns of herons on it vs the morning stars. That the Herondale ring suits him better, as he has a soul like a bird in flight vs a falling one like Lucifer (pg. 286). Given all that's happened so far with Jace, why do you think this was an important scene to include in COFA? Why would Kaelie tell that to Clary? 

    Please DO NOT POST SPOILERS. There's some fans who are joining the read-a-long who are reading COFA for the first time.